At Last: Temple Crew Enjoys New Home
After a battle royal to keep its crew program, Temple University on Thursday officially dedicated its newly renovated boathouse on the Schuylkill River. On hand was the program’s savior, H.F. Gerry Lenfest, who donated nearly $3 million to assure that Temple crew had a home.
Lest we forget, in late 2013, then Temple president Neil D. Theobald announced that he was shutting the vaunted crew program for budget reasons and a howl went up in the rowing world. Lenfest, on the board of Temple, stepped up with the funds needed to repair the East Park Canoe House, the dilapidated longtime home of Temple crew.
In writing my book, I interviewed Gerry Lenfest and asked him why he had decided to save Temple rowing. Lenfest, who neither grew up in Philly nor ever rowed replied:
“I couldn’t believe that Temple, the city’s principal university, with the most graduates, couldn’t have a place on the Schuylkill. The sport is so germane to the city.”
Here’s a link to a video of the new boathouse.
(Post published March 17, 2017)